One of our main purposes of gathering corporately for worship is to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ. We aspire to do this throughout our whole worship service by cultivating in all who gather three things:
- A dawning realization of the greatness of your God,
- A growing awareness of your own sinfulness
- But also a fresh and continual discovery of the pardoning grace of God revealed in the cross of Jesus Christ (This last phrase is adapted from Jack Miller and his book Outgrowing the Ingrown Church.)
This is why we regularly confess our sins corporately and personally to the Lord. After our time of personal confession, we hear one of our pastors speak to us God’s assurance of pardon from the Scriptures. How can we be so bold to assure people of God’s forgiveness? God’s Word contains countless promises where He assures His people of His forgiveness.
One of the high moments of our worship service occurs when we hear right after the assurance of pardon: “…if your faith is in Jesus Christ this morning, then I assure you, based on the sure promise of the Word, that your sins are forgiven….”
Oh what a blessing to know that you are completely forgiven, totally accepted and profoundly loved by our Lord! Why not reflect on the wonderful and assuring promise of the prophet Micah: “Who is a God like You, who pardons iniquity… who delights in mercy… You will subdue our iniquities; and cast all our sins into the depths of the sea” (Micah 7:18-19)?